Need and technology has produced an array of instruments to comply with OSHA's standards to identify and evaluate unseen hazards at locations requiring an evaluation due to the presence or potential presence of hazardous substances. The instruments and tools in use are designed to indicate specific types of hazards or characteristics of the materials being evaluated within a designated operating or indication range. Trained professionals, such as Environmental or Hazardous Material Specialists, Industrial Hygienists, Safety Officers, or emergency responders can use hazardous materials field screening equipment for a variety of purposes, not the least of which includes protection of the public and response personnel during an emergency situation or disaster involving unknown or known hazardous materials.
With the large array of field screening tools available, the CCF set out to address two concerns in compiling this manual. First, there are agencies that have many of the instruments and tools described in this manual and need a "quick and dirty" resource to refresh staff on the screening tool and its use. This manual, with the links to manufacturers' manuals gives the information to the user quickly and conveniently. Second, in some jurisdictions, multiple agencies often have varying tools and this manual will allow users to quickly learn what the tool can do and any concerns regarding its use.
These hazardous materials field screening tools analyze various media (gas, liquids or solids)for a wide variety of parameters and assists responders and other personnel responsible to evaluate site conditions to gauge risk, develop mitigation strategies and options for reducing or eliminating hazardous conditions. This assessment also assists in identifying needed personal protection equipment and actions necessary to keep workers safe during mitigation activities. This manual has been compiled using instructions and information provided by the manufacturer of the specific instrument or equipment. Users must read the manufacturer's instructions completely for a full understanding of the equipment. Summary information and specifications are provided with references to website links for more detailed instrument use,calibrations, and maintenance instructions.
Most importantly, this guide does not describe or intend to assist in the interpretation of the results and findings using the field screening tools described herein. Only properly trained professionals, knowledgeable in the many variables that could affect result interpretations should be making decisions or giving directions based on the field results.